China aims to construct a "space lab" 10,000 feet under the South China Sea

June 13, 2016 by  
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China takes top billing in this week’s news of the “what the huh?” variety. China is working to secure rights to the South China Sea in order to build what can only be called a “space station” deep below the ocean’s surface . The proposal involves a platform built 9,800 feet under the waves, where dozens of crew members would be stationed. The purpose? Primarily to aid in the country’s offshore mining efforts. Evidently, word has not yet reached China about what a devastating practice that can be. The Chinese Science Ministry recently gave a presentation on the plan, although many details aren’t available to the public at this point. Essentially, the country wants to construct a deep sea scientific hub where crews could survive, underwater, for up to a month. Theoretically, all manner of ocean-related scientific research could be conducted there. The project was mentioned in China’s five-year economic development plan, released in March, wherein this deep sea lab was ranked second in priority among the top 100 scientific projects the country aims to undertake. Related: China is building artificial islands in disputed South China Sea territory After Chinese authorities reviewed the plan, it was evidently decided to speed up progress on the underwater platform, although there have been no announcements related to the project’s time line, design, cost, or specific location. It’s presumed at this time that President Xi Jinping’s administration is targeting the South China Sea , evidenced by the country’s efforts to secure sovereignty over the highly disputed waters. China already considers more than 80 percent of the South China Sea under its sovereign territory, in the face of opposition from Taiwan, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei, and the Philippines, which all stake some claim to various parts of the same region. What will happen next in the evolution of China’s underwater ‘space station’ project is anyone’s guess. Via Motherboard Images via Jennifer C/Flickr and  Wikipedia

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China aims to construct a "space lab" 10,000 feet under the South China Sea

Earthquake-resistant affordable home stacks together like Legos in just six days

June 13, 2016 by  
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Used as a stronger alternative to brick walls, ferrocement can be handcrafted from locally available materials to reduce the structure’s impact on the environment and its cost. The Full Fill Home prototype at the Venice Biennale, for instance, was constructed using materials recycled from the German Pavilion used for last year’s Venice Biennale. “We’re not just talking about affordability in terms of money here, we’re also talking about impact on the environment,” Kundoo told Dezeen . “We can’t afford to keep building the way we do.” The material is low-tech enough to be produced by masons in their backyards, yet strong enough to withstand harsh winds and mild earthquakes. Related: The Armadillo Vault’s hundreds of limestone slabs are held together without glue Flexibility is a main factor in the prototype house design, which comprises modular and hollow ferrocement blocks that can be stacked like Legos to build anything from walls to furniture. The simple modular blocks can also double as storage and be in a variety of shapes, sizes, and colors to suit the homeowner’s needs. Each house can be assembled in as little as six days and disassembled in one day. Following the conclusion of this year’s Venice Biennale, the Full Fill Homes property will be donated to Marghera and used to house the homeless. + Anupama Kundoo Via Dezeen Images via Anupama Kundoo

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Earthquake-resistant affordable home stacks together like Legos in just six days

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